Facts on Vitamin C

One of the critical facts on Vitamin C is that it is often described as the master water-soluble vitamin because it works throughout your body to maintain or improve health.

Limes and LemonsVitamin C deficiency can result in scurvy, a disease that is not so common today as it was in the age of European exploration. At that time, when the causes were unknown, on voyages longer than 3 or 4 months without touching land and eating vegetables and fruits with Vitamin C, a large proportion of the crew would suffer from scurvy.

As early as 1593 Sir Richard Hawkins had extolled the virtues of "sour oranges and lemons" as the most effective way to prevent the outbreak of scurvy, and a controlled experiment with limes was conducted in 1747 and published in 1753 (giving rise to the once widely used nickname "Limeys" to describe Englishmen - someone ironic since lemons have about 4 times the Vitamin C of limes - but then we'd have to call them "Lemons" which might get confused with cars built in the UK). By the 1790's scurvy had been largely eradicated in the Royal Navy. OK enough history, let's get back to health issues more prevalent today.

• One Vitamin C indicator might be how frequently you get colds

• Essential for the synthesis of collagen (one of the long fibrous structural proteins it is the main protein of connective tissue)

• As a first line antioxidant protection it neutralizes free radicals - this is one of the critical facts on Vitamin C - if you want more information on free radicals and the dangers they pose to your health click on Neutralizing Free Radicals (opens in new window).

• An interesting piece of Vitamin C information – it helps to prevent the oxidation of lipids

• Assists in the regeneration of other antioxidants

• Lowers total cholesterol and triglycerides while increasing HDL – the good cholesterol Encyl Nutr Suppl

• A co-factor for many enzyme systems such as those used in synthesis of ATP (Adenosine-triphosphate), a nucleotide used in the transfer of intra-cellular energy in the mitochondria of each cell

• Supports healthy adrenal functions to promote cardiovascular health

• Supports the integrity of the walls of arteries

• Protects the liver from environmental toxins Encyl Nutr Suppl

• Infections significantly deplete the level of Vitamin C in white blood cells Encyl Nutr Suppl

• It is depleted during times of chemical, psychological, emotional or physical stress Encyl Nutr Suppl

• Helps to regenerate Vitamin E in the body

• Aids in tissue growth and wound healing Alt Med

• Needed for the absorption of Calcium and Iron Alt Med

• Higher serum levels of beta-carotene (Vitamin A), Vitamin C and selenium are associated with lower asthma prevalence in 4-16 year olds Am J Resp Crit Care 2004;169:393-398

Pregnancy

Pregnant Woman• Decreases rate of pre-term delivery Am J Ob Gyn 2003;189:519-25

• Decreases rate of preeclampsia (toxemia) Epidemiology 2002;13:409-416

• You’ll find quite a bit more about nutrition, nutritional supplements and pregnancy in It’s About Health. The link is at the bottom of the page.

That's some of the facts on Vitamin C. It also performs other functions and evidence shows it is useful in preventing and/or assisting in the treatment of several conditions or diseases. Consult my book, It's About Health. A link is at the end of this page.

What form should I choose?

What is Vitamin C? It is the master water-soluble vitamin and it works throughout the body to help maintain your health, so you want to be sure that the form you choose will work the best.

For the full benefits of Vitamin C choose a product that incorporates:

- calcium ascorbates,

- potassium ascorbates,

- magnesium ascorbates, and

- zinc ascorbates.

This type of Vitamin C puts more Vitamin C in your bloodstream than ascorbic acid (the most common and the cheapest form of Vitamin C), and maintains that higher level for close to 10 hours.

For more on ascorbic acid and why it is less effective

click here (opens new window)

RDA

• Adults: Males 90 mg/day; Females 75 mg/day

• Teens: Males 75 mg/day; Females 65 mg/day

• Children: 1-4 years 15 mg/day; 4+ years 25 mg/day

Dosage in Supplements

• Adults 1300 mg/day

• Teens 500 mg/day

• Children 1-4 years 125 mg/day; 4+ years 250 mg/day

Toxicity

Vitamin C is well tolerated with doses as high as 9000 mg/day reported. Higher doses can cause diarrhoea and possibly kidney stones in persons susceptible to them. So while a Vitamin C overdose is not impossible, it is easy to stay within the upper limits.

So that's a lot of facts on Vitamin C and now you know we're not talking about the Vitamin C Graduation Song. But if you need a music video break click here (opens in new window).

Need More Information?

That's some Vitamin C information. For more facts on Vitamin C and its usefulness in preventing many conditions see my book It’s About Health. It is mentioned in relation to many of the over 25 conditions and diseases covered in the section titled “Medical Evidence for Using Nutritionals”, in over 120 pages of summaries of medical studies on the efficacy of vitamins and minerals. Or just continue to surf through all the free evidence-based information in the 200 pages on this web site. It’s About Health

Continue to Choline

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